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One of the most beautiful garden shrubs opens its buds in May: the Turkish poppy (Papaver orientale). The first plants that were brought to Paris from eastern Turkey more than 400 years ago probably blossomed in bright red - just like the one-year-old relative, the gossip poppy (P. rhoeas). Since the beginning of the 20th century, different varieties have come into being whose large peel blossoms today also delight us with delicate pinks or whites. Depending on the color, they give the Turkish poppy a magnificent, sometimes romantic appearance.
The flowers reach in diameter 20 centimeters and more. That the leaves wither after flowering in July is no cause for alarm. By the height of summer, the magnificent shrub completely withdrew. Therefore, you should plant the perennial poppy in the middle of the bed, so that the resulting gap is not noticeable.
Downy mildew is spreading
One of the most common poppy diseases is downy mildew (Peronospora arborescens), which has been found in the Turkeys poppy in Germany since 2004. Yellowish whitening on the top of the leaves are the first signs of infestation. With a long-lasting high humidity and moderate temperatures, a gray, rarely also bright spore grass forms on the lower side of the sheet. If the poppy capsules are infested, it comes to infection of the seeds, through which the fungus can be easily transmitted.
Since last year, the infection has become so prevalent that many perennial nurseries have completely removed the plants. Tip: Only use disease-free, tested seeds when sowing. To combat downy mildew fungi in the field, only Polyram WG is currently available as a preparation for ornamental plants and perennials.